Sea apple

IDENTIFYING FEATURES

Brightly coloured sea cucumber with hues of blue, red and violet. This bright colour advertises its toxicity to potential predators. It has a stout, cylindrical body with the oral end turned up and tapering. A ring of feathery tentacles line the feeding area.

Scientific name: Pseudocolochirus axilogus

Common name: Sea apple

Family: Cucumaridae

Size: Largest specimen recorded measured 125mm dorsally and 325mm ventrally

A red sea apple

DISTRIBUTION

Found in the Pacific Ocean along Australian waters.

HABITAT

They occur on reefs and in coastal areas where they can be found on hard substrates. They attach to substrates in areas of high flow and can remain in the same spot for long periods of time.

DIET

Sea apples are filter feeders and use their tentacles to feed on suspended planktonic food particles in the water. Once they have captured the food, they draw the entire tentacle into their mouths.

REPRODUCTION

They have separate sexes and practice sexual reproduction. Males release sperm and females release eggs into the water. They unite and the larvae develop which eventually grow into adults.

CAPTURE

Due to their beautiful colours and interesting appearance, they are widely sought after for public and private aquaria.

REGULATIONS

None.

STOCK STATUS

Unevaluated.

SOURCES

Marine Species Identification Portal [2013]
http://species-identification.org/

Saltcorner [2013]
http://www.saltcorner.com/

LiveAquaria.com [2013]
http://liveaquaria.com/

AquariumDomain.com [2013]
http://www.aquariumdomain.com/